Lake 16, Martin, Allegan County, Michigan. The ice thickness today was 6″ clear, 2″ frosted, 2″ of slush heavy on the water. Air temperature at start of day was 33F and 28F three hours later with a freshening breeze. Water temperature 36-38F depending on whose gauge you thought was most correct. You could visually track the diver as he went down until he went below 25 feet. Bottom depth at this spot was ~42 feet. Last diver down had a lateral visibility of ~20 feet after your eyes adjusted to the darkness with no lights being used. Only a partial wagon wheel & spokes could be shoveled out due to the wind having made snow less spots around the area. Only one ice fisherman on the lake with us and he was having no luck at all.
Today’s dive was more of a check out your dry suit for form, fit, and function and to see if you remember how to snap the dry glove cuff’s and insure the zippers are ALL the way closed. Visibility was 5 feet average, not a lot of fish but still a good dive over all and a few bottles were recovered. As the month progresses the river current is increasing day by day. As a side note, we had a interesting time in the park before the dive as we had the opportunity to practice opening a car door with a coat hanger for a lady who had locked them in her car. Where is the slim jim when you need one
It was a foggy morning but the air temperature was in the 40’s, the breeze off shore was slight but having the “Toy” box provide shelter and heat is always welcomed. Though we started at 10 AM instead of our regular high noon dives, we had 6 divers and 2 shore support participate in today’s dive. As we did last week this was still another “dry run” for the new dry suiters and a pre- new year’s dive for others. Most everyone stayed “dry”, maybe a few wet hands but successful dives for everyone. Just a little grubbing was done with no major finds other than two keepers: a nice embossed hutchie and a sailboat brass folding prop.
We had a sunny day at Paw Paw Lake with air temperature a balmy 39°F, water at 38°F (personally it felt much cooler to me), at least 6 feet of visibility and a nippy breeze that froze wet hands quickly. The main purpose of the dive was to allow several divers to try out new dry suits & dry gloves in a controlled environment. Bottom line was everyone had a good time, they learned new things about their suits, and everyone stayed dry Now they are ready for some hard water diving!
Today was the annual (after Thanksgiving Day) TURKEY dive by the Muddies. We had a bright sunny day, gentle breeze, air temperature of 41°F when we arrived and went all the way up to 51°F by the time we left. Of course the water temperature was a nippy 38°F and the visibility was either zero or up to 3 feet, once your eyes adjusted to the darkness and if you had a powerful light. Five divers decided to enter the water supported by five others who provided encouragement and surface support to those entering the river. Thanks to Ken R from bringing the “Toy Box” for use as a changing room (w/ heat), club rescue gear and back up O2. After the dive we adjorned back to Wolf’s Marine to recharge scuba tanks, have turkey soup (Thanks Jim S) then caravanned to the local Pizza Hut for those wanting additional substance.
MUD divers entering the Saint Joseph River off of Riverfront Park in Niles, MI.
There were 16 divers in the water grubbing for treasures in today’s swift current. Five divers came over from the Sunrise Coast (Detroit area) to grub with the muddies this day.
Thought the air temperature was in the high 40’s, the occasional rain down pour made it feel colder and the 42°F water was a tad chilly.
With all the divers in the river the visibility varied from zero to 6 feet but once your eyes adjusted to the low light you could see well enough to stay safe and grub.
By the end of the second dive, piles of bottles (Treasures) were grouped together for viewing and critiquing.
The best finds were a completely intact clay bottle, a 1886 embossed whiskey, ceramic half jug, and multiple medicines, pop, and beer bottles with a little bit of everything else tossed in.
We had super surface support which included having the warm and dry “Toy Box” available for dressing and photographers recording just about all the antics involved in suiting up and doffing the gear afterwards then sharing the photos with us all.
This day’s dive was in the Saint Joseph River as it flows by Riverside Park in Niles, Michigan. We had cloudy skies, sprinkling snow with a slight breeze making the 28F temperature feeling considerably cooler especially on wet hands.
The water temperature was a balmy 38F and though the surface looked calm there was a significant current and having a river stick came in very handy. Depending on where you were and who was upstream the visibility averaged about 5 to 8 feet.
Of the 5 divers in the water, four went dry initially, but if your zipper in not really “closed”, semi dry is a better word and Mary Beth, our Mud Club president, went wet showing the rest of us who was the hard core diver.
We had a few shore line gawkers providing opinions on the sanity of the people in the water, surface support and a few pictures were taken by Jake, and a few treasures were found. Coffee and soup hit the spot after the dive as we discussed lessons learned at the post dive debrief. As a side note, the club’s Annual Turkey Dive is the 29th so plan on participating – wet or dry.